Saturday, 16 August 2014

Liz Earle Botanical Essence No.15

I'm going to start this post off with my first memories of trying a Liz Earle fragrance, as it is a sweet one. I was sent the Botanical Essence No.1 perfume to try along with a selection of other Liz Earle products a few years ago. I fell in love quickly with it. I wore it everyday and would go through bottles very quickly, but what really made it special was the fact that their PR at the time was always kind enough to send me little get well soon parcels with some of my favourites in there and of course she always included a bottle of  Botanical Essence No.1. Whenever I wear it now it makes me smile but when I first got sick and was going through many hospital visits a spritz of Botanical Essence No.1 would always perk me (and always had the nurses asking what perfume I was wearing) and now when I look back at that time it makes me smile that one fragrance and one person managed to make my life a little brighter. 

Onto Botanical Essence No.15 I had wanted to try this for a while so treated myself during a bout of online shopping a while back. Since I loved their first fragrance I had high hopes for No.15. Now I know perfume is a tricky one to review as it will always smell different on each of us, so I'll just ramble on why I like it. In the typically sleek and simple packing was the second of Liz Earle's fragrances. Unlike it's sister scent No.1 which is a fresh, light, citrus-y summertime fragrance. No.15 is a rich inviting deep fragrance, something that I love, over the past year I have been using richer scent and this fits into that slightly masculine yet still feminine genre for me. For most people I'm sure it would be perfect as a winter fragrance, however if you are like me, I've been wearing it through the summer. The rich, warming ingredients of tonka bean and vanilla, are mixed beautifully with the spice of pink pepper and cinnamon and a touch of rose. The blend of 15 world’s most precious botanicals really envelopes you in it, wrapping around you and warming you. I picture myself sitting in front a wood burning fire with a hot drink on a cold winter day. It's a comforting fragrance. I also like the fact it is derived from over 90% sustainably sourced natural ingredients, carefully picked and created by award winning French perfumer Alienor Massenet. 

If you want to try it for yourself then pop over to Liz Earle here - Link!

Thursday, 14 August 2014

Revamping my makeup bag - Bases

Laura Geller Balance 'n' Brighten, Laura Geller The Real Deal Concealer and Clinique Stay Matte Foundation

A few months ago I totally revamped my makeup bag, looking to try new products that would give me my desired medium-full coverage finish but without the dreaded caked on and heavy feel/look to it. It all started one day when I wasn't feel well and resigned myself to a day in bed and happened to switch onto QVC and it was a Laura Geller show. I was immediately drawn to the Balance 'n' Brighten after seeing it demonstrated on a girl who had quite bad pigmentation and scarring problems. Similar to my skin type and concerns, so I kept watching and the end result really impressed me. I swiftly placed an order for two shades - medium & light - not sure seeing them on tv how true to life the colours would be. A few days later opening my parcel I had plenty of doubts in the fore front of my head doubting how well it would cover and conceal. I did a half face so I could compare and wow was all I could say looking at my skin and seeing it perfectly evened out, no hint that there were any discolouration or acne scars hidden underneath. It looked natural, glow-y and it felt light weight. The colour correcting swirls allows it to adapt to your skin tone, so no matter your concern it will help to brighten your overall complexion, thanks to the silky swirls of 7 different shades of pigments. It is packed with skin loving ingredients and anti-oxidant protection from the  Centella Asiatica and White Tea Having being used to a very definite feeling of "yup I'm wearing foundation today" it was nice to not feel like I was wearing anything at all. It does come with a retractable brush that you can adjust to help apply your desired coverage. It comes 5 in the UK, from the very fair to deep which is great. You can purchase it here - Link!

The Laura Geller The Real Deal Concealer was another buy that I wanted to try as I was getting a little tired with the work needed to make my MAC concealer stay put. This little tube has been my favourite in covering some horrible breakouts recently, it literally blanks out the skin with a semi matte finish. I wear the shade light and it works perfectly, even when I have a slight tan it manages to adapt well. From covering my dark circles to my breakouts and acne scarring this little gem hides them all. It is a silicone based formula which I usually stay away from however it doesn't feel like your typical silicone based product. It glides on smoothly and is incredibly long lasting on me. It's oil free and apparently packed full of "healthy vitamins" which I'm not sure on as I can't seem to find any information about what exactly these vitamins are. Laura Geller claims it is water-resistant and while I certainly haven't tested that claim out, I can say on the incredibly hot weather we have had recently in the UK it stayed well on my skin, no need for any touch ups all day! I was impressed to say the least, usually even with my other favourite concealers I have to at least sort of creasing especially under the eyes -  not here. You can pick one up here - Link!

Check out the rest of the Laura Geller line up on QVC UK here -  Link!

Last but not least is Cliniques Stay Matte Oil-Free Foundation has actually been sat in my 'products to test box' for quite some time, I couldn't even tell you when it was sent to me. However it was left unused simply because the weather didn't warrant a matte foundation. Recently though I definitely needed to break it out and I adore it. It leaves me skin looking even and fresh, however although it does say 'matte' on me it appears more of a semi-matte texture. I love it, I really can't say that enough. For day to day use I just apply a little bit of this with my Laura Geller The Real Deal Concealer and I'm set all day - no blotting required. When the weather is particularly hot and humid (which has been quite a few days down south this summer!) I set it with either a little bit of the By Terry Hyaluronic Hydra-Powder or my Laura Geller Balance 'n' Brighten if I'm looking for slightly more coverage. The lightweight gel-cream texture is lovely on my skin, it does feel very light on me, another reason I'm really enjoying it for it's comfortable feel. It keeps my skin shine free and even throughout the day, the shine absorbers control any trouble areas that get especially oily and keeps enlarged pores refined. The coverage is buildable you can easily build up thin layers if you want a more moderate-full coverage or just a single layer for a sheer look. I use a very small amount (probably about the look of 2-3 grains of rice) and that is more than enough to even out my skin. For me the best application method is my fingers, or if I am going for a fuller coverage I use a flat top kabuki brush. It comes in a brilliant 17 shades from the very fair to the very deep. You can purchase it from Clinique here - Link!